Long-awaited sequel was originally set for release a year earlier in 2015

The release date of Independence Day 2 has been pushed back a year.

The long-awaited sequel had been set for release on July 3, 2015 but will now open in cinemas on July 1, 2016, makers 20th Century Fox have confirmed.

At the end of last month (October), director Roland Emmerich revealed that two different versions of the film’s script have been written. One version features Will Smith‘s character Captain Steve Hillier, Emmerich explained during an interview with The Playlist, whereas the other does not. Emmerich then added that “it’s looking good” for the version that does feature Smith.

In June of this year (2013), when the sequel was given its original 2015 release date, Emmerich said Smith would not be reprising his role from Independence Day because he is now “too expensive”. However, in September the director revealed the situation had changed and Smith was now in talks to return.

Emmerich has already confirmed that Bill Pullman will be back as President Thomas J Whitmore and Jeff Goldblum will be returning as geeky computer expert David Levinson. The original film, released in 1996, followed a last-ditch effort to thwart an alien invasion taking place on July 4 – the day of America’s annual Independence Day holiday.

Emmerich wrote the original Independence Day with Dean Devlin and the pair also collaborated on the scripts for the sequel, which have recently had a rewrite from James Vanderbilt (The Amazing Spider-Man, Zodiac).